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Rats Roundup - Feb. 19

by Kyle Morrison / Florida Panthers
Welcome back to Rats Roundup, where we look back at all the best Panthers content you may have missed.

Key figures in the #FancyStats community – prominent bloggers, front-office analytics experts and more – converged on Sunrise last weekend for the Panthers Analytics WorkShop.

Panthers Director of Hockey Analytics Brian Macdonald put the event together, featuring a few star-studded panels. Prominent speakers included Panthers Associate General Manager Tom Rowe, TSN’s Scott Cullen and many more. Jameson Olive has the full recap of the event.

More stars were in the building two days later – just from a different sport – as the Panthers hosted three pitchers from the Miami Marlins.

Jarred Cosart, Mike Dunn and former MLB Rookie of the Year José Fernandez attended the game, with Fernandez doing the ceremonial puck drop to raucous applause.

This wasn’t Cosart’s first Panthers game, either. After going to a few, he’s starting to catch on to the game’s finer points, and watching the Cats grow into a contender has left a mark on the 25-year-old pitcher.

Cosart also drew parallels between the Marlins and Panthers – namely that they’re both young, exciting teams, led by legendary players.

"It's a pretty young team, you've got a little mix. Jagr, 44, Ichiro, 41 — two guys that are ambassadors of the game. They've been around a long time, they go about their business the right way, so as young guys you learn from them."

Speaking of Jagr, Monday’s game also marked his 44th birthday. He’s now one of just four non-goalies to play a game after turning 44. He’s not just playing, either – he lead the Cats in points this season.

NBC Sports’ Jason Brough pointed out that, when Jagr was born, The Godfather still hadn’t been released – along with plenty of other historical tidbits. But Jagr certainly isn’t playing his age. When asked if he still feels like he’s 34, Jagr laughed and told reporters he feels like he’s 24.

As for the actual game, the Cats prevailed in a shootout thriller – leaning on big games from Nick Bjugstad and Al Montoya – snapping a two-game skid.

PITvsFLA Game in GIFs

The Cats went to a shootout for a second consecutive game on Thursday, eventually falling to the Sharks in a hard-fought game.

Bjugstad showed a flair for shootouts this week – going two-for-two in attempts – and he explained what goes through his head in this week’s Bjugy’s Blog, saying confidence is key. He also broke down his workout music (Young Jeezy), fast food of choice, thoughts on Valentine’s Day and more in a must-read post.

Finally, ESPN’s Craig Custance tried to predict who’s going to end up on Team North America – a Canadian/American hybrid team of under-23 stars – at the upcoming World Cup of Hockey.

The way Custance sees the team shaping up, two Florida Panthers will make the cut. Winger Jonathan Huberdeau and defenseman Aaron Ekblad will play alongside the likes of Connor McDavid, Johnny Gaudreau and John Gibson.

Broward County native Shayne Gostisbehere also made the cut for Custance. The 22-year-old defenseman is riding a 13-game points streak for the Flyers.
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